After looking at the announcement for End of Life support for IOS 12.4 (and you know that IOS 15 is the next version dont you ?) it’s worth looking into the big changes in IOS Feature licensing in case you are not aware of them.
Big Changes to how we work!
IOS 15 is a single software package for the hardware platform that your are using. Now that flash is cheap and large, there doesn’t need to be a different IOS image for the different versions with the advanced features. So you get one software image that has all the features for that platform.
Licensing and Cisco Licensing Manager
You should note that IOS 15 enforces licensing for the Advanced feature sets. That is, you will need to register a license key for every IOS image that needs Advanced IP and receive an activation key to activate those features.
Licensing is basically similar to how the ASA software licenses work today. You need to buy the license, receive the PAK key on a piece of paper, register this on Cisco website to receive an activation key and then enter it into the router. If you want access to the advanced feature sets, you will need to purchase the license and activate it on the router.
Yes, Cisco equipment just got a whole lot harder to manage.
Cisco License Manager
If you are a large company, it is time to implement Cisco Licensing Manager to manage the licenses on all of your equipment. This will allow you to manage and transfer licenses between physical units.
Note that when you replace a faulty router, you will have to activate the license on that router as part of the recovery process. So you will need to update your field engineers to make sure that they know how to do this and perform License Transfer Between Two Working Devices or get on the phone to the TAC or use the web to transfer a license.
Software Activation Configuration Guide
I can’t see any point in blogging about this in detail, Cisco IOS 15.0 documentation is clear and concise as always. Cisco really does the best documentation.
You can find out more in the†Software Activation Configuration Guide.
Time to go and learn what you need to know.